SEALING YOUR TRAVEWRTINE TILES AND PAVERS
Travertine, a type of limestone, can be left in its natural state, with no polishing. Travertine is a sedimentary rock formed from calcareous remains of plants and animals or precipitated from solution. It is natural Calcium Carbonate (CaCO3) and will yield lime when heated. Varies in hardness. Etched by acids. Porous with many visible holes, often filled with epoxy. Polishing powders tend to accumulate in the holes and can make clean-up difficult. Because it is soft and has epoxy-filled holes, it should never be cleaned at pressures above 800 PSI and then only if the grout and the epoxy filling are in good condition.
Travertine is one of several natural stones that are used for paving patios and garden paths. It is sometimes known as travertine limestone and as travertine marble. The stone is characterised by pitted holes and troughs in its surface. It comes in a variety of colors from grey to coral-red. Travertine is most commonly available in tile sizes for floor installations.
Travertine is etched by acids, including soft drinks and juice. Acid-based cleaning chemicals can also etch. Absorbs oils and other liquids and is more easily stained than marble. Therefore, putting Travertine in a kitchen or heavily used bathroom is not a good idea. Travertine should only be cleaned with a neutral or mild alkaline-based cleaner.
Travertine can be used for countertops but it’s not recommended. It is easy to scratch and etch. It works well for flooring, accessories and smaller spaces. This stone seems to open up small areas and makes them feel more spacious and airy. The surface finishes for travertine stone vary. Not all travertines are capable of the polished high gloss finish – only the harder types. This stone will never achieve the same glossy finish as marble. and granite will.
Travertine can have four major finishes: polished (shiny), honed (matte), brushed and tumbled (textured surfaces). The type of finish given to the travertine will determine how shiny the surface will be. The most common finish for travertine is honed.
Travertine should be sealed with a penetrating sealer such as TASMAN CHEMICALS – STONE SHIELD OR ENHANCING SEALER to prevent staining and reduce soiling.
What are the DO’s and DON’Ts of Travertine?
- DO clean up spills immediately to minimize damage to your stone.
- DO use trivets or mats under hot dishes and cookware.
- DO use place mats under china, ceramics, silver and other objects that can scratch the stone’s surface.
- DO use coasters under glasses, especially if they contain alcohol or citrus juices.
- DO clean surfaces regularly with TILE KLEEN OR SLATEKLEEN Cleaner.
- DO use TASMANS STONE SHIELD Sealer to protect the stone.
- DO use a tray for toiletry products in the bathroom to protect the surface from the damaging chemicals contained in many toiletry products.
- DO dust mop marble floor tile regularly.
- DO use door mats inside and out along with runners and area rugs on marble floors.
- DON’T wait to clean up spills on stone.
- DON’T use cleaners that contain acid such as bathroom cleaners, grout cleaners or tub cleaners.
DON’T use vinegar, bleach, ammonia or other general-purpose cleaners.
- DON’T use abrasive cleaners such as dry cleansers or soft cleansers.
- DON’T use alkaline cleaners not specifically formulated for stone.
- DON’T use scouring powders and abrasives because they will scratch the surface.
- DON’T Place toiletry products directly on the countertop surface.
- Care & Maintenance of Travertine:
Travertine countertops look great in the store or online but they are not a good option! Travertine is a natural stone and will vary in density. Travertine is one of the most porous stones available. This is not good for countertops! These countertops stain quite easily and then you are stuck with it. Travertine is very predisposed to acid. Acid will etch the surface and stain it. Lemon juice will even mar the surface of the counter. You are not to leave any liquid standing on the countertops, even water, for a short period of time because it could sink in and stain. Travertine countertops require a lot of regular sealing applications to keep them from staining. Even putting Travertine in a bathroom is a bad idea because many soaps/skin creams are going to stain/etch it
Travertine is porous, and easily stained and is etched by acids. Avoid setting beverage glasses directly on Travertine as they leave rings. Fruit juice, carbonated beverages or other acids will etch (remove shiny surface) if allowed to remain on marble. Wipe up acid spill immediately, and wipe surface with wet cloth. If surfaced is etched, polishing may be required.
Natural stone is very porous. The best way to prevent stains is to treat the surface with a protective sealer. The sealer fills in the pores and repels spills on the surface, allowing you time to completely wipe it away.
Dust mop interior travertine floors frequently using a clean non-treated dry dust mop. Sand, dirt and grit do the most damage to natural stone surfaces due to their abrasiveness. Mats or area rugs inside and outside an entrance will help to minimize the sand, dirt and grit that will scratch the stone floor. Be sure that the underside of the mat or rug is a non-slip surface. Normally, it will take a person about eight steps on a floor surface to remove sand or dirt from the bottom of their shoes. Do not use vacuum cleaners that are worn. The metal or plastic attachments or the wheels may scratch the surface.
We recommend that you use care and maintenance products from TASMANS Professional series that are specially formulated to protect and enhance the beauty of your travertine. Once the stone is sealed, clean up is usually easy. We recommend that you use TILE KLEEN or SLATEKLEEN cleans with a gentle, pH-neutral formula that removes soils while reinforcing the original protective seal to help prevent future staining.
Although we usually think of travertine as “hard,”, it is a very porous material. Travertine has varying degrees of porosity. If left unsealed, spills and everyday messes can easily penetrate the surface. The liquid eventually evaporates but the stain is left behind.
Removal of oily stains is easily accomplished with TASMANS Oil and Stain Remover or for deep stubborn stains by using a poultice to draw the stain out overnight..
Fluorochemical technology, incorporated into STONE SHIELD and ENHANCED, is the most advanced technology available, providing the ultimate shield against both water and oil-base stains. The micro-molecular formula actually bonds with the stone surface to deliver unsurpassed wear resistance and durability. And because the sealer reacts with the stone, you no longer have to worry about its porosity.
So basically in a nutshell you will need the following products:
- TASMAN STONE SHIELD sealer ( little to NO colour change once applied and set)
- OR TASMAN ENHANCE sealer ( will result in a matt finish with a near wet look)
- TILEKLEEN or SLATEKLEEN
- For a stubborn buildup of grout on the tile, and ONLY with tumbled and brushed surface tiles LIFTOFF can be used BUT never on HONED or POLISHED travertine tiles.